148th Kentucky Derby Betting
The 148th running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 7th is expected to be wide-open with no consensus favorite. Zandon is listed as the 3-1 favorite on the morning line, but Epicenter probably would have been favored if not for drawing an inside post position. Messier is also listed at single-digit odds on the morning line and there are nine other horses listed at odds of 20-1 or less. Zandon is coming off a win in the Blue Grass Stakes and he is expected to be tested by Epicenter, trained by Steve Asmussen. This year’s Kentucky Derby will not include six-time winning trainer Bob Baffert who is serving a suspension. His horse, Medina Spirit, who finished first in the 2021 Kentucky Derby, tested positive for banned substances and was disqualified in February. Post time for the 2022 Kentucky Derby on Saturday on NBC is 6:57 p.m. Eastern Time.
2022 Kentucky Derby At a Glance
Date: Saturday, May 7, 2022, 7 p.m. ET
Location: Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY
Length: 1 1/4 miles ( 10 furlongs ), dirt track
Purse: Approximately $3 million
Kentucky Derby TV Coverage: NBC
Kentucky Derby Format
Typically, we see 20 horses qualify for the Derby with up to four standbys in case something happens. The qualification process is extensive with horses accumulating points over the course of their two- and three-year-old seasons. The horses with the most points earn a spot in the Kentucky Derby field as long as their connections choose to race them.
A maximum of 20 horses run in the Kentucky Derby each year, and for the most part, the slots are always filled. The horses that end up as the favorites to win the Kentucky Derby are the ones which win major Grade 1 races held in March and April. The only exception is the UAE Derby winner who almost always ends up being one of the longer shots on the board. To this day, no horse which won the UAE Derby has come anywhere near winning the Kentucky Derby.
2022 Kentucky Derby Odds at BookMaker
White Abarrio +1024
Mo Donegal +1228
Charge It +1416
Smile Happy +1636
Crown Pride +1841
Classic Causeway +2602
Tiz The Bomb +3122
Barber Road +3122
Ethereal Road +4050
Pioneer of Medina +4050
Tawny Port +4050
Happy Jack +6050
Summer is Tomorrow +6050
2022 Kentucky Derby Field
(Post Position, Horse, Trainer, Jockey, Morning Line Odds)
1. Mo Donegal, Todd Pletcher, Irad Ortiz Jr., 10-1
2. Happy Jack, Doug O’Neill, Rafael Bejarano, 30-1
3. Epicenter, Steve Asmussen, Joel Rosario, 7-2
4. Summer Is Tomorrow, Bhupat Seemar, Mickael Barzalona, 30-1
5. Smile Happy, Kenny McPeek, Corey Lanerie, 20-1
6. Messier, Tim Yakteen, John Velazquez, 8-1
7. Crown Pride, Koichi Shintani, Christophe Lemaire, 20-1
8. Charge It, Todd Pletcher, Luis Saez, 20-1
9. Tiz the Bomb, Kenny McPeek, Brian Hernandez Jr., 30-1
10. Zandon, Chad Brown, Flavien Prat, 3-1
11. Pioneer of Medina, Todd Pletcher, Joe Bravo, 30-1
12. Taiba, Tim Yakteen, Mike Smith, 12-1
13. Simplification, Antonio Sano, Jose Ortiz, 20-1
14. Barber Road, John Ortiz, Reylu Gutierrez, 30-1
15. White Abarrio, Saffie Joseph Jr., Tyler Gaffalione, 10-1
16. Cyberknife, Brad Cox, Florent Geroux, 20-1
17. Classic Causeway, Brian Lynch, Julien Leparoux, 30-1
18. Tawny Port, Brad Cox, Ricardo Santana Jr., 30-1
19. Zozos, Brad Cox, Manny Franco, 20-1
20. Ethereal Road, D. Wayne Lukas, Luis Contreras, 30-1
Epicenter is listed as the favorite in the betting odds at BookMaker and he could very well go off as the post-time Kentucky Derby betting favorite. He is trained by Steve Asmussen and ridden by Joel Rosario. He looked really good in his win in the Risen Star and in the Louisiana Derby. He is one of three horses in the field who has earned both Beyer and Brisnet speed figures of 100 or better.
Zandon is the second choice in the betting odds at BookMaker. He is trained by Chad Brown and ridden by Flavien Prat. He got a big win in the Blue Grass Stakes, but has losses to Epicenter and Mo Donegal.
Messier is trained by Tim Yakteen and ridden by John Velazquez. Yakteen was an assistant trainer for Bob Baffert and several of Baffert’s horses were transferred to Yakteen when Baffert began his suspension. Messier is the son of Empire Maker and has never finished worse than second in his six career starts. He is tied with Taiba for the highest Beyer speed figure in the race at 103.
Kentucky Derby Winners (2000)
||I'll Have Another
||Mine That Bird
||Bennie Woolley Jr.
||John Ward Jr.
Authentic upset Tiz the Law to win the 2020 Kentucky Derby with the fastest time in almost two decades. Monarchos finished the 2001 Kentucky Derby in 1:59.97, but no horse had finished the race with a time under 2:01 since that point.
||Spend A Buck
Running the Kentucky Derby in anything less than 2:01 is considered blazing fast. Secretariat has held the track record for nearly 50 years, running the 1973 Kentucky Debry in 1:59.40, and he is one of two horses to finish the race in under two minutes.
Longest Odds To Win
The odds of a horse like Donerail winning the Kentucky Derby again are slim and none, but with the way these prices play themselves out, you never know. No one gave Country House much of a chance after favorites dominated the Kentucky Derby for the last five years, but he pulled off one of the biggest upsets in the event’s history in 2019. Granted, he was helped by Maximum Security’s disqualification 22 minutes after he seemingly won the 2019 Kentucky Derby.
Most Jockey Wins
||1938, 1941, 1945, 1948, 1952
||1957, 1960, 1962, 1964, 1969
||1955, 1959, 1965, 1986
|Angel Cordero Jr.
||1974, 1976, 1985
||2007, 2009, 2010
||1923, 1925, 1930
||1988, 1995, 1997
||1894, 1890, 1891
||1998, 2000, 2008
||2002, 2014, 2015
||2011, 2017, 2020
It's becoming tougher and tougher for modern jockeys to have success in a race like this one, but there are a few who really stand out. Calvin Borel has made a living out of winning the Kentucky Derby with late-charging horses who love running on the rail. Victor Espinoza won consecutive Derbies in 2014 and 2015 with California Chrome and American Pharoah. John Velazquez won three Kentucky Derby titles from 2011 to 2020.
Most Trainer Wins
||1938, 1941, 1944, 1948, 1949, 1952
||1997, 1998, 2002, 2015, 2018, 2020
|D. Wayne Lukas
||1988, 1995, 1996, 1999
||1921, 1926, 1932, 1933
If you thought it was tough to try to figure out which jockey was going to win the Kentucky Derby year in and year out, trying to pick the trainer is even harder. Of this list of four men who have won the Run for the Roses at least four times, only one is relatively modern in Bob Baffert. He has trained three recent winners with American Pharoah in 2015, Justify in 2018, and Authentic in 2020.
When Doug O'Neill won the race with Nyquist in 2016 that ended a stretch of 13 consecutive years in which a different trainer won the Kentucky Derby. O'Neill also trained I'll Have Another in 2012.
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